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Even Lady Louisa Stuart, with Scots blood in her veins, had little good to say of it; to cross the Border into Cumberland was for her to return to civilization and decency.Nor was Scotland’s sense of inferiority likely to be soothed by the attitude of her neighbours.Cannon were being made for many nations, and the Carron pipes and sugar-boilers and fire-grates were soon to be famous throughout the land.The Highland drover, already perplexed by the intrusion of Lowland sheep on his hills and the cutting of his native woods by English companies, saw in the flame and smoke of the ironworks a final proof that his ancient world was crumbling.It was the clearing-house of the Highlands, as Stagshawbank on the Tyne was the clearing-house of Scotland.

There, within sight of the Highland Line, a quarter of a century after a Jacobite army had campaigned on that very ground, the coal and iron of the Scottish midlands were being used in a promising industry.The centenary of the death of Sir Walter Scott is my excuse for the re-cutting of some of the lines of Lockhart’s imperishable memorial, and for an attempt at a valuation of the man and his work after the lapse of a hundred years. December 1931 In the autumn of the year 1771 an Edinburgh citizen, returning after many years’ absence, would have noted certain changes in his native city.It is a book which I was bound one day or other to write, for I have had the fortune to be born and bred under the shadow of that great tradition. If, on the morning after his arrival at the White Horse Inn in the Canongate, he had ascended to the high places of the Castle hill, and looked north and east, he would have missed one familiar landmark.In truth she had given England small cause to love her.The seventeenth century, with its invasion of England by a Scots army, the bartering of their king by that army for arrears of pay, and the attempt to impose the Presbyterian discipline upon all Britain, had left an ugly memory.